Learning and belonging at adult Sunday school

Learning and belonging at adult Sunday school

Mariesa Worman

The biblical language sounds blunt today compared to what we read in the KJV. It is very clear that God told the Israelites to “Never stop reading The Book of the Law he (Moses) gave you. Day and night you must think about what it says.” – Joshua 1:8a (CEV) Never stop reading? How does that work?

There are many resources at our disposal in today’s high-tech environment, but one medium that has served Christianity well through the centuries is Sunday school. Margaret Holdridge has been a volunteer leader for the Sojourners class for more years than she can recall. What she is able to discuss in detail is the value she and those who join her on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. receive from coming together around the truth of scripture.

“Bible study is the chief emphasis of our class,” Margaret says. “We love to study straight from the Book and everyone likes to participate in the discussion.” The consensus of the class is, asking questions is the best way to learn.

In addition to lively Bible study and discussion, Margaret explained that the close fellowship they share keeps her coming back. “We share joys and concerns each week and emails are sent to class members that remind us how to be praying for each other. I really think it’s prayer that keeps us connected.” For Margaret Holdridge, Sunday school, service in the sanctuary and choir are all paramount aspects of personal and corporate worship.

Gary Mathews and his wife, Jimmie, began attending Sojourners around 1996. Gary says Sunday school gives him a stronger sense of belonging and more opportunity to get to know and care for others. “A small group provides a better connection with the Church, and I love hearing everyone’s story. It adds immense value to my worship experience,” he acknowledged.

“A small group provides a better connection with the Church, and I love hearing everyone’s story. It adds immense value to my worship experience.”
– Gary Mathews

Bob Farris, a member of the Shepherds class, is in complete agreement. He and his wife, Pam, attended the Westminster class for approximately 20 years and have since enjoyed Shepherds for 15+ years. Their class has not met during the pandemic but he explained that everyone is eager to get back together. “We are a tight knit group and continually check on each other. You become a big family in Sunday school and I can’t imagine life without it,” Bob exclaimed. “I am so glad to have these people and this place to grow with!”

The “closeness” revealed by our sister and brothers reminds me of another passage: “Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them ... Let your spirit be on fire, bubbling up and boiling over, as you serve the Lord.” – Romans 12:9a/11b (NLT/Voice) The spirits of these individuals are surely in keeping with Paul’s encouragement here, and all that is involved in a Sunday school class is part of what keeps that fire ablaze.

Perhaps you’d like to make your way to one of First Church’s many Sunday morning classes? In so doing, you too will share in the warmth emanating from folks who have chosen to “never stop reading” the Word of the Lord and who continually strive to “let their love be without hypocrisy.” At least, that’s how the NKJV says it!

Would you like to get involved in a Sunday school class? Contact
Duff Points or Hannah Elliott at the Church.

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